Letters of hope from Abbeyfield School bring joy to Age UK Northamptonshire clients in isolation
Written by Martin Steers on April 8, 2020
Age UK Northamptonshire welcomed a donation of over 100 letters from pupils at Abbeyfield school in Mereway, Northampton. They have now been delivered to older people across Northamptonshire and have bought joy and happiness to older people who are isolating due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Before the school closed its doors following Government guidance, students decided to turn their attention to helping support older people in their community. They raised £1082 through a non-uniform day, collected donations of essential food items and wrote letters of encouragement to people who are feeling particularly lonely and isolated because of the lockdown.
The money raised is helping the locally registered and funded charity to continue their emergency service. Money supports:
- Creating and delivering emergency food packages for older people.
- Preparing and delivering hot, two-course lunches.
- Carrying out welfare checks and making adaptations in people’s homes where necessary.
- Carrying out shopping, dropping off medication and other essential supplies.
- Providing information and advice which includes benefit claims and checks.
- Telephone befriending.
The letters have now been delivered to older people via Age UK Northamptonshire’s emergency delivery service which is supporting over 300 people a week. The service was put in place to support the most vulnerable across Northamptonshire and is being coordinated from the Venton Centre, York Road, Northampton, NN1 5QG.
One touching letter from a Year 10 student reads: “I know that you are probably scared and feel alone but you are not. The Abbeyfield School community is right behind you ready to help.”
Fern Overton, Day Care and Transport Services Manager said “The letters were amazing, so thoughtful and encouraging and have really shown our clients that they haven’t been forgotten. The letters have been delivered and feedback has been really positive. They have bought a smile to the faces of many and given people a real boost.”
Siona Robson, Principal of Abbeyfield School “I am so proud of our fabulous students and staff. The fundraising day, despite everything, was such a positive, purposeful day. As a school, we raised £1,082 for Age UK Northamptonshire. This is an incredible sum considering we had depleted numbers. I am delighted that the cards that students made, and their lovely, positive messages have made such a difference.”
The success of the letters donated by pupils at Abbeyfield School has seen Age UK Northamptonshire appeal for more “messages of hope”. Young people are being encouraged to send electronic pictures, cards, and letters via email to [email protected] which can then be printed and delivered.
Age UK Northamptonshire is also welcoming donations from individuals and businesses of essential items such as:
- Tinned food
- Soup, pasta, rice
- Cleaning products and toilet roll
- Entertainment – Jigsaw puzzles, card games, crosswords, sudoku and books.
To arrange safe drop off, email [email protected] or call 01604 604500. Outside of business hours please contact 07900 228 057.
The charity has set up a Coronavirus emergency Just Giving page raising money to support their work which can be accessed: justgiving.com/campaign/coronavirusappealAgeUKNorthamptonshire
More information about Age UK Northamptonshire’s services can be found at www.ageuk.org.uk/northamptonshire or by calling 01604 611200.